Iranian Media: Centralised Control and Tattered Accountability

In Karmasin, M, T. Eberwein, & S. Fengler (Eds.) 2021. Global Handbook for Media Accountability. London: Routledge

Posted: 10 Jun 2020 Last revised: 26 Jun 2020

See all articles by Mahsa Alimardani

Mahsa Alimardani

University of Oxford - Oxford Internet Institute; Article 19: Global Campaign for Free Expression

Marcus Michaelsen

The interdisciplinary Research Group on Law, Science, Technology & Society (LSTS) at the Vrije Universiteit Brussel

Date Written: May 24, 2020

Abstract

Iranian media are under strict state control. State authorities interfere in media content, persecute critical journalists, and curtail journalist associations. Internet censorship as well as satellite jamming and threats against Iranian journalists abroad further erode the freedom of information. Formal instruments of media accountability are thus sabotaged by the authoritarian state apparatus. Despite comprehensive information controls, however, there is room to critically interrogate the performance of domestic media and dominant media narratives. The fictionalisation of the political elite regularly plays out in the media, so that in particular the press reflects internal debates and rivalries. In addition, a vibrant transnational media landscape offers Iranians access to alternative information, both online and through professional satellite programs. Using social media content, these external communication channels have repeatedly been able to contest the political instrumentalisation and curtailment of media inside Iran.

Keywords: Media, Accountability, Censorship, Iran

Suggested Citation

Alimardani, Mahsa and Michaelsen, Marcus, Iranian Media: Centralised Control and Tattered Accountability (May 24, 2020). In Karmasin, M, T. Eberwein, & S. Fengler (Eds.) 2021. Global Handbook for Media Accountability. London: Routledge, Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3609293

Mahsa Alimardani (Contact Author)

University of Oxford - Oxford Internet Institute ( email )

1 St. Giles
University of Oxford
Oxford OX1 3PG Oxfordshire, Oxfordshire OX1 3JS
United Kingdom

Article 19: Global Campaign for Free Expression ( email )

60 Farringdon Road
London, EC1R 1UQ
United Kingdom

Marcus Michaelsen

The interdisciplinary Research Group on Law, Science, Technology & Society (LSTS) at the Vrije Universiteit Brussel ( email )

Brussels
Belgium

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